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Old 04-18-2010, 02:18 PM   #1
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Question Help

Just bought a 99 wrangler 4.0 auto and discovered a pinhole leak in the lower radiator hose. I'm thinking looks easy, but how do you get to that upper clamp? I'm a newbie here and mechanics in general, so is there a trick to this?

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Old 04-18-2010, 02:22 PM   #2
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Are you talking about the one to the water pump? If it is the stock spring clip, you can usually get a pair of channel locks in there, and get just enough tension off to spin it to a better position for an easier to use pair of pliers. Taking the belt off helps tons; it's easy on my 04, but I think the tensioner is different on the earlier years, which may be a bit more difficult.

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Old 04-18-2010, 02:26 PM   #3
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Yes, and you're right taking the belt off would make it easier, but that looks like a little much for my skill level. There's a bracket that doesn't allow channel locks, I think I'm stuck!
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Old 04-18-2010, 02:29 PM   #4
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Welcome to the forum.
There is no real trick to this, however you might want to empty as much coolant as possible before taking off the leaking hose. Place a bucket or some type of catch basin underneath. Replace the hose and refill, check to make sure you mix the new coolant properly for the weather in your part of the country. Depending on when it was changed last, this might be a good time to do a complete flush.
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Old 04-18-2010, 02:34 PM   #5
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If you can do the hose, you can do the belt, it's not terribly complicated :-) The biggest thing is to make sure you know the routing for the belt to go back on, which is on a sticker if you have the stock radiator. If not, take pictures with a camera phone or something. To get the belt off on the 04, you just put a 1/2" ratchet or breaker bar in the tensioner pully arm and push. On the earlier ones, I think there was a release bolt that keeps the thing snug, then an bolt for adjustment, rather than the spring-style. If you need, I can take pics of mine so you can get the idea (it might even be the same).
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Old 04-18-2010, 02:54 PM   #6
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It's not so much the belt as the bracket to the pulley. From the top, you can barely even see the hose, and the spring clips are even worse.
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Old 04-18-2010, 02:55 PM   #7
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And from underneath, it's not much better!
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Old 04-18-2010, 03:02 PM   #8
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You're gonna just have to get in there and get a little dirty. But underneath is the way to atack it. Or you could pay a shop around $40 to do for you.
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Old 04-18-2010, 03:11 PM   #9
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Wow, that bracket for the power steering pump is a lot more annoying on yours than mine. From the bottom might be better. If they didn't change the fan, there is one position that has a bit more space between the blades so you can rotate it for some arm room. I have rotated spring clamps using a large flat screwdriver before by pushing on the tang that releases pressure for the direction you need it to spin, which might be doable from the top to ease getting it from the bottom.

Also, did you spot the leak itself or do you think it's the hose because of fluid on there? The reason I ask is that there is a weep hole on the water pump for when it starts to go bad, and it is also common to start leaking at the heater hose inlet, which is right on the water pump. Hate to have to drain it twice...
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Old 04-18-2010, 10:55 PM   #10
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No I could see the fluid squirting out the hole. Thanks for the help though. Got it from underneath and from the rear. Hope that's not taken outta context! So my simple job took about 3 hrs, included a trip to the store for an another extension. Not a problem replacing the spring with a hose clamp right?
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Old 04-18-2010, 11:01 PM   #11
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Nice, glad that's all it was, and that you got it done. Nothing I can think of; I think I have replaced all of mine with the worm-drive type. I assume they use the springs just to make it easier at the factory.
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Old 04-18-2010, 11:46 PM   #12
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You'd be wise to use a hose clamp. Much easier to tighten/remove. Others will yell at you saying hose clamps don't offer uniform tension around the connection.

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